About Fogdog's Weight Loss

Don't Focus on the Goal...

If you've followed this blog you know that I've struggled for many years with improving my health. I've finally reached a point where I've managed to maintain a small amount of success. Now it's time to take the next step, but I believe it requires a new way of thinking.

Instead of trying to get healthy, why not shift focus toward learning how to build healthy habits instead. Follow me as I try to teach myself how to Engineer healthy habits that will allow me to take my health to the next level. Let's see where this experiment goes!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Journal Update 11/22/09

As you can see from my last post I managed to have another good week.  In fact, I feel like it has been a great week because it was a very hard week for me and I still managed to take some weight off.  I worked a lot this week and had a really important but stressful project due on Friday.  Usually when my routine changes it gives me an excuse to stop eating right.  I managed to pull it off and I feel really good about it.  I was still shaking off a cold for most of the week so still no exercise yet.  I didn't track my calories either, but I did eat right all week long.  Last Sunday my wife made a small pan of brownies, I ate 1 small piece on Sunday and then another small piece Monday night.  For me this was another small victory (small victory #3) because usually when my wife makes brownies, they are usually gone the day they are made.

The middle of the week brought the usual challenges.  In preparing for finishing my big project (Thursday and Friday) I was very busy.  I struggled a little getting my water in but always got at least 60 ounces each day.  I ate balanced meals and I've also discovered a great oatmeal breakfast:

1/2 Cup Oatmeal
1 Cup 1% Milk
3/4 Cup Frozen Blueberries

Mix the 3 items in a bowl and microwave for 1 minute 3 times stirring in between each time (3 minutes total).  Let sit for about 5 minutes to thicken up and then drizzle a little honey on it.  It tastes great and is just under 400 calories!  I had it every work day this week for breakfast.

The end of the week brought my biggest challenge yet.  On Friday we had completed our final presentation for closing the project.  All went extremely well so as a reward my friend and I bought our team lunch as a "thank you" for working so hard (they did a really great job).  By the time we got the pizza I was starving.  At first I told myself that I would just go to my office and eat the lunch I brought, but as the leader of the project, that really didn't feel right not to participate with the rest of the team.  Instead I decided that I would only eat 2 pieces of pizza.  I ate my 2 pieces and drank water instead of soda (small victory #4).  I wanted to eat a whole pizza myself, but I knew I had to weigh in the next morning and I think that helped me stay on course.  Afterward I felt great!  It was nice to have a celebration with my team and not eat like a pig.

Since I met my goal for the week, I cut myself some slack this weekend.  However, unlike last weekend, this time I managed to control myself a little better.  On Saturday we took the kids out for lunch.  Being kids, their idea of a good meal is the local pizza buffet.  I have to say, buffets are my arch nemesis.  I have probably gained more weight from buffets than any other restaurant type including fast food joints.  I mentioned it before in a previous post that I have a hard time separating value and cost.  At buffets I feel like I have to get the most for my money so I eat and eat and eat whether I'm hungry or not.  This time was going to be different.  All week long I've been realizing how much my weight problem is in my head.  I went into that restaurant convinced that I was going to enjoy myself, but under no circumstances was I going to come back out feeling like a big fat pig.

I started off with a salad and even though my wife paid for me to have a soda, I got water instead.  Usually when I go to a pizza buffet, I usually get 2 slices of everything I like and 3 slices of anything I really like.  Then for dessert I get at least 2 of everything.  This time I decided to only get 1 slice of the kinds I like and then I didn't eat the crusts.  Why fill up with all that crust on the end of each pizza, all it does is sit like a rock in your stomach.  I also made an effort to actually taste the pizza instead of just wolfing it down.  It was nice, I actually enjoyed all the flavors from the different pizzas I like.  After that I had 1 small piece of each of the desserts and that was it!  Now I know this isn't exactly a knockout as far as calories go, but for me this is huge.  I have NEVER walked out of a buffet without feeling absolutely stuffed.  On Saturday I did just that and it felt great! (small victory #5)

Now it's time for my first really big challenge.  Thanksgiving week is finally here.  On Tuesday night I'm driving all the way up to Maine to visit with my family.  I'm really excited to go, but I know it will be difficult to eat right.  First I have to drive 14 hours through the middle of the night.  It's hard to eat healthy on the road, but we are packing a lot of healthy snacks so I don't have to stop a lot along the way.  When we get there we are going out with my family for dinner on Wednesday.  The place has already been decided; Chinese Buffet!  Everyone in my family is overweight and usually when we get together it usually turns into a pig-fest.  I love Chinese, so my big challenge here will be to do as well as I did when I went to pizza buffet.  Of course the next day is Thanksgiving so I'll have to watch myself there.  After that, we drive back to NJ to visit with my in-laws before going home on Sunday.

In order to survive this trip I'm going to need a plan:
  1. I already mentioned, we are going to pack a lot of healthy snacks for the drive up.  By packing healthy snacks it should help me to resist the temptations to eat junk from convenience stores or fast food restaurants.
  2. I'm going to have to find ways to get some exercising during the trip.  I already know my calorie intake is going to be higher than usual so I need to burn a little more.  The hotel we are staying at has a gym so I plan on hitting it for at least 30 minutes each day we are there.  I'm also going to try to get some exercise in on the days before we leave.
  3. During all the family get togethers, I am going to try to focus on eating really slow.  I haven't seen my family for quite some time, so if I spend more time talking than eating, I should be able to keep my calories down some.
  4. I'm going to have fun!  If I feel like I'm suffering on this trip it's only going to push me toward a binge at some point.  I'm not going to worry about every little bite and I definitely want a piece of my mom's pecan pie.  Remember this is a lifestyle change so I have to be able to deal with family events.
Wish me luck, I'm probably going to need it.

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